A Melbourne sports store is back-paying 12 casual staff almost $60,000 after an investigation by the Federal Workplace Ombudsman found it was underpaying the workers.
Workplace inspectors audited the eastern suburbs business last year after one of the workers complained that he had been underpaid.
Workplace Ombudsman Victorian director Rhonda Murray said today that another 11 male and female casual sales assistants in their early to mid-20s had also been underpaid.
Murray says the underpayments were the result of the employer not paying weekend penalty rates, public holiday loadings or the correct minimum hourly rate.
The underpayments occurred between February 2005 and January 2008. The biggest underpayment of a single worker was $13,000.
Murray said that as the business had co-operated with her office and voluntarily agreed to back-pay the workers the money owed, there would be no further action against the company.
“We accept that the underpayments were inadvertent and that the company is now complying with its workplace obligations,” she said.
“We also welcome the employer’s positive response to our findings.”
However, Murray cautioned that the Workplace Ombudsman viewed the underpayment of workers very seriously and if the Agency initiated legal action, penalties of up to $33,000 per breach were applicable.